Copyright applies to all works of an artistic nature including, but not limited to, photographs, paintings, sculptures, maps, charts, graphs, diagrams, cartoons (static not moving animations), logos, engravings, sketches, blueprints and buildings or models of buildings. Protection is also given to works of artistic craftsmanship which can include crafts, embroidery, ceramics, woodworking and jewellery.
Using Artistic Works
You can use an artistic work for certain purposes such as educational use, research or study or criticism or review. For more information see Using Copyright Material.
Physical ownership is different to copyright ownership. Copyright is generally owned by the artist or creator of the work, but it can vary depending on factors such as employment or licensing agreements - see Ownership of Copyright for more information. When you purchase an original artwork, you will only own copyright if there is an agreement to that effect.
If a photograph, portrait or engraving is commissioned for a fee, then the person commissioning the work will own copyright unless an agreement is made.
Rights of Copyright Owners
Copyright owners of artistic works hold the right to reproduce, publish, communicate or broadcast their works. There is no right 'to perform' artistic works, you do not need permission to exhibit an artistic work if the copyright owner has already made it publicly available.
For more information see Rights of Copyright Owners.
Duration of Copyright
|Published or made publicly available during the author's lifetime||Published or made publicly available after the author's death||Created anonymously or under a pseudonym||Copyright expired if...|
Life of the artist + 70 years.
|70 years from the end of the year the work was first published or made publicly available.||Artist died before 1 January 1955; or Category C work published before 1 January 1955|
|Engravings||Life of the engraver + 70 years.||70 years from the end of the year the work was first published or made publicly available.||Work published in the engravers' lifetime and the they died before 1 January 1955; or|
|Work not published during engravers' lifetime but published before 1 January 1955; or|
|Category C work published before 1 January 1955|
Works made for, or first published by a government, or in which copyright is owned by a government, lasts for 50 years from the end of the year of first publication.